TiVo. the synonym for DVR is increasingly a footnote in a market it helped create. TiVo is down to 3 million subscribers. With more than 30 million DVR homes in the US, that’s less than 10% of the market.
How sad for TiVo, its two best business models at this point seem to be its fledgling data service and lawsuits. So far for TiVo though even when they win the lawsuits, as they have with DISH, the appeals process is endless.
Now it seems that if you’re a distributor of DVRs, you will be sued unless you have either partnered with or invested in TiVo and TV has filed patent infringement suits against Verizon and AT&T.
Comcast has invested in and “partnered” with TiVo, but so far the now years-long partnership with Comcast has yet to produce any Comcast TiVo DVRs anywhere but in New England. It seems like for the last four (or is it five?) years we’ve heard “testing” and “any time now” a service will be rolled out where you can get the benefits of TiVo with Comcast for an additional $5 over the $9.95 or so you’re already paying for DVR service. I’d pay it too. But nope. Still waiting.
TiVo’s on/off relationship with DirecTV has both helped TiVo greatly and hurt them badly as reflected in the chart below. The relationship is on again, but a new HD-TiVo for DirecTV has not rolled out yet (scheduled for this year).
Bill will probably update the chart when he gets back (it’s current through the April 30 quarter), but adding the net subscriber losses of 146,000 for the quarter ending July 31, won’t change the way the chart looks in a way you’d notice.